A Soldier First by Rick HillierA Soldier First by Rick Hillier

A Soldier First

byRick Hillier

Hardcover | October 8, 2009

Pricing and Purchase Info


Earn 175 plum® points

Prices and offers may vary in store

Out of stock online

Not available in stores


The number one-bestelling blockbuster about the life and career of Canada's most controversial and popular military leaders

Finalist for the CBA Libris Award for Best Non-Fiction Book of the Year

In the summer of 2008, General Rick Hillier resigned his command as Chief of the Defence Staff of the Canadian Forces. You could almost hear the sigh of relief in Ottawa as Canada's most popular, and most controversial, leader since the Second World War left a role in which he'd been as frank-speaking, as unpredictable, and as resolutely apolitical as any military leader this country has ever seen.

Born and raised in Newfoundland, Hillier joined the military as a young man and quickly climbed the ranks. He played a significant role in domestic challenges, such as the 1998 ice story that paralyzed much of eastern Ontario and Quebec, and he quickly became a player on the international scene, commanding an American corps in Texas and a multinational NATO task force in Bosnia-Herzegovina. But it was his role as General Rick Hillier, Canada's Chief of the Defence Staff, that defined him as a Canadian public figure. In Afghanistan, Canada faced its first combat losses since the Korean War and every casualty suddenly became front-page news. A country formerly ambivalent or even angry about its role in the conflict suddenly became gripped by the drama playing out not only in the war zone of a country half-way around the world, but in the unfriendly conference rooms in the country's capital as Hillier pulled no punches, demanding more funding and more troops and more appreciation for the women and men fighting a war on foreign soil.

General Rick Hillier, born in Newfoundland and Labrador, enlisted in the Canadian Forces in 1973 through the Regular Officer Training Plan program. He graduated from Memorial University in 1975 with a B.Sc. degree. In May 2003 Hillier was appointed Commander of the Army, and in October 2003 he was selected as the Commander of the NATO-...
Title:A Soldier FirstFormat:HardcoverDimensions:552 pages, 9.5 × 6.5 × 1.71 inPublished:October 8, 2009Publisher:HarperCollinsLanguage:English

The following ISBNs are associated with this title:

ISBN - 10:1554684919

ISBN - 13:9781554684915

Look for similar items by category:


Rated 5 out of 5 by from Excellent An interesting book, written by a man who brought the Canadian Forces to the forefront of the Canadian public. Any past or present military person would enjoy this book, but it's written so that anyone would also understand and enjoy it. The many acronyms, of which the military is so fond, are explained. His persona, as a downhome Newfoundland boy, is evident throughout the book. This man has a phenomenal memory. While on his book tour, when he met someone with whom he once served, even briefly, he remembered names, spouses' names and circumstances. His time as CDS will long be remembered. I highly recommend this book to anyone who is interested in the actual activities of the military, written from the perspective of someone who knows and not as portrayed by the media. Excellent book.
Date published: 2010-01-07
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Well. Isn't this interesting? Hillier is pretty good, but he is not a great writer, yet his workingman prose is appropriate to this combination biography of a fairly ordinary guy and history of the transformation of the Canadian Armed Forces. In a strange and masterful way Hillier describes the historic change he marshaled as something of which he was only an observer, something inevitable, and something which is of profound importance to our country. Hillier's book is certainly something worth reading for all Canadians who actually care about being Canadian.
Date published: 2009-12-03
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Great book! Really enjoyed this book. As a loved one of a deployed soldier, I was really able to relate to it. It was very well written, easy to read, and had a great balance of politics and personal life. It is a great book for anybody, military or not.
Date published: 2009-11-18

Editorial Reviews

A Soldier First is an enjoyable, informative, and often insightful account of a remarkable soldier’s career, written in the personable, ‘folksy’ style for which General Hillier was famous.”